Back in middle school, my seventh grade history teacher went off page one day and talked about shooting the executives at Purina if his dog ever died from poisoned dog food.

It was weird.

After watching the recently released trailer for Red, I can now retroactively feel his pain. In this movie, adapted from a novel by horror novelist Jack Ketchum (who is happily seeing many of his books snapped up for film adaptations lately), the ubiquitous Brian Cox plays a man with a troubled past who is spending his twilight years operating a local hardware store. His best bud is a weathered and loyal canine named Red. While the two are on a relaxing fishing excursion, a group of young troublemakers happen upon the pair. After one of the kids inexplicably blows the dog to kingdom come, Cox reaches out to the authorities for a serving of justice. But they are all out of justice that day, my friends. So Cox makes like Charles Bronson and goes after Tom Sizemore. The End. Actually, there might be a little more to it than that. You can check out the trailer (right here) to see for yourselves.
Looks like Cujo in reverse!

Red, which got its head patted and its stomach rubbed at this year’s Sundance, is slowly trotting its way to a limited, late summer theatrical release. The film co-stars Kim Dickens (great in Deadwood) and the aforementioned lonesome, tattered, toiled and troubled (like a mofo) Tom Sizemore. Horror vets Robert Englund and original Pinhead pincushion Ashley Laurence also put in appearances. The horror folks were most likely pulled aboard the project by blood movie buff Lucky McKee – the original director of the movie. McKee dropped out or got kicked off of the film well into its shoot. Norwegian director Trygve Allister Diesen stepped in to Finnish things up.

That’s too bad about McKee. I think he has a pretty sharp eye for this stuff. I loved his bent May, which featured a great performance by his pal Angela Bettis. And The Woods, while a little stilted, was a stylish and oddly Harry Potter-ish affair. Cox has been getting loads of good notices for his performance in this, which is no surprise. The man reduced me to tears in 25th Hour. And Super Troopers, actually.